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How to Tell Your Chimney Needs Sweeping

We recommend that you get your chimney cleaned about once a year. However, there are certain circumstances in which creosote can build up faster (or slower) than it normally would, meaning you may need to clean at a different frequency.

Want to check whether your chimney is in dire need of cleaning? Read on to learn about when to get your chimney professionally cleaned, and find out more from our chimney sweeps.

Checking Creosote Levels

For the most part, we recommend that you leave your chimney inspection and cleaning to the professionals. Doing this early in the season can help to prevent creosote from building up to an extreme level in the first place. However, there is a way to see from the fireplace if your creosote levels have gotten out of control.

You’ll need a dust mask, goggles, a fireplace poker, and a powerful flashlight. Shine the light up past the damper until you see a black surface of creosote (a sticky, tarlike substance that collects in the chimney as a result of incomplete combustion). Use the poker to scratch the surface and see how big a dent your line makes. If the creosote is ¼” thick, it is dangerous, since this substance is highly flammable. Call a professional chimney sweep to take care of it right away, and do not use the fireplace.

Other Signs of a Chimney Problem

There are other signs that your chimney is in need of professional service. This is true, for example, if smoke fills the room or if you notice bad odors from the fireplace.

Whenever you need chimney service, whether it’s routine cleaning or a major repair only call in a certified chimney sweep. Professional chimney sweeps have more than a brush to push around. They are trained to recognize safety issues and other troubles that could come up.

2nd Generation Chimneys, Inc. offers professional chimney cleaning services in St. Paul. Call us today and each year to meet with your local chimney sweeps.

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